Kate Middleton and Prince William tied the knot at Westminster Abbey ten years ago, and the entire world watched. Having everything come together so perfectly—the Alexander McQueen gown, the Gothic cathedral, the horse-drawn carriages, and the grand kiss on the Buckingham Palace balcony—felt like something out of a real-life fairy tale.
Although it goes without saying that not even the future King of England believes in fairy tales, they clearly aren’t real. The road to marriage for Kate and William was actually quite lengthy. The beginning of Prince William and Kate Middleton’s courtship may have been determined by fate or randomness, in the form of a first-year dorm assignment at St. Andrews University in Scotland, depending on your point of view.
William’s entrance on campus was welcomed with a flurry of activity; numerous photographers jostled for position to capture images of the young man and his father making their way across the grassy quad. The adolescent was then granted a brief interview that was picked up by publications throughout the world. On the other hand, Middleton had already arrived in St. Salvator’s Hall without a sound. It’s hard to believe now, but back then, nobody knew who she was.
But William caught on quickly. Because Kate was an art history major like himself, he frequently saw her in the hallways and on his route to and from classes. Over the course of the semester, they became friends while eating breakfast together and talking about how much they both liked to ski. Kate would give William her notes from the class if he had to miss a session. “When I first met Kate, I realized there was something unique about her,” William said, thinking back on their first encounter.
It was clear to the author that “there was perhaps something that I wanted to investigate there,” but a romantic relationship between the two was out of the question at the time. However, tensions emerged during their second semester together. Kate, a normally introverted “girl next door,” caused a sensation when she strutted her stuff in lingerie at a charity fashion show. Reports from the front row indicate that William said to his friend Fergus Boyd, “Wow, Fergus, Kate’s hot! ”
In the following year, William, Kate, and two other friends found an apartment off of the university’s main campus. Friendship was all that existed between them in the beginning. Despite this, William, a man who is used to getting his way, tries and fails to impress Kate. He explained, “I was attempting to prepare these extraordinary gourmet feasts.” However, every time I tried to do so, disaster struck in the form of a burn, an overflow, or a fire.
She’d be the one in the background, offering her assistance while also seemingly running the show. Over the course of the following months, feelings of affection developed between them. Over time, they were able, to tell the truth to their roommates. To begin with, “I suppose at first they were a bit astonished that it had happened,” William says. “After that, they began to appreciate how lovely it was.”
Having to hide in plain sight temporarily was made more accessible by their shared housing arrangement. However, because of the compact nature of campuses, rumors spread rapidly. As word of their relationship spread, it was soon common knowledge among the students and faculty at St. Andrews. In Bucklebury, England, the Middleton family’s residence was swarmed by reporters.
Kate’s father, Michael Middleton, said, “We are extremely amused at the prospect of being in-laws to Prince William, but I don’t think that’s going to happen.” One year later, though, the lid finally came off the whole affair. The couple was photographed by the paparazzi while skiing in the Swiss Alps in March of 2004. After much waiting, “Finally…Wills gets a girl,” read the headline on the top page of The Sun on April 1.
The headline says, “Prince William and Kate Middleton were extremely close at Klosters.” In an instant, Kate Middleton became a household name and has remained so ever since. Both William and Kate received their degrees at St. Andrews in June 2005. Kate and her father’s embrace was captured in a photo taken by Kate’s dad. They’re still young, stunning, and radiant with joy.
However, the pair found college to be an isolated experience. While William was attending college, he and Kate were able to date (relatively) in private because of a media embargo in Britain. The time had come to face reality and have that bubble collapse. Kate’s commoner upbringing was fair game for the British tabloids. Her family was known as “the Middletons,” and she and her sister, Pippa, were called “the wisteria sisters” (because of how fast they could climb).
Additionally, Kate’s work ethic was criticized during her stint as a buyer for the apparel company Jigsaw. Kate’s mother, Carole, received criticism for chewing gum in 2006 when she attended William’s graduation from Sandhurst Military Academy. A rift has developed between them by 2007. As a result of William’s commitment to the Household Cavalry at Windsor, he was unable to spend much time with Kate.
His partying antics, however, made it into the press. Come springtime. They officially broke up. Middleton says of the separation, “At the time, I wasn’t very happy about it, but honestly, it made me a stronger person.” Long-term couples are more likely to reconcile after a separation.
At the base of Mount Kenya in October of that year, Prince William popped the question to Kate Middleton with an engagement ring that had belonged to his mother. After waiting three weeks, they finally broke the news to the public. During their official engagement interview, Middleton said to reporter Tom Bradby, “I’m eager to learn quickly and work hard. William agreed: “She’ll do incredibly well.”